Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Current projects - kilts and quilts


We have finished the third session of our kilt making course at The Museum of the Black Watch in Perth, where we are going on Tuesday evenings.  The course is taught by Ruari Halford-Macleod and we are making box pleat kilts - the kind of kilt that forms a 'missing link' between the great kilt of the C18th and the modern knife pleated kilt.

Ruari has made kilts from tweeds as well as tartans so, inspired by this, Glyn chose a black and red Welsh plaid from Calico Kate.  It is woven at Felinfach Felindre near Lampeter.  We didn't want to use an obvious clan tartan because he doesn't have any clan connections.  It should make a really nice kilt, but it is harder to sew because it is a little lighter in weight and more open weave than a Scottish tweed and the small check doesn't give the stitcher as much visual information to line up when sewing.


I'm using 'Spirit of Wales' tartan, which we got from Macnaughton's when they had a mill shop sale at their warehouse on the Inveralmond Industrial Estate in Perth.  They sell as The House of Edgar for tartans and The Isle Mill Ltd for furnishing fabrics.  Most of what they had at their mill sale was ends of rolls (for the tartans), but enough for a kilt.  I also got 1.8 metres of 'Dark Island' tartan - Glyn could do with a Goth kilt as well!  That will only be just enough to make a kilt.  Their Welsh dragon plaid was also irresistible.

'Spirit of Wales' has a bold white line in the pattern, so has to be matched carefully.  Almost all the kilt is hand sewn.  Oddly enough, it seems to have more in common with sewing kimono and hakama than most dressmaking. 

A general view of the class.  We are working in the education room and restaurant, part of the 2013 extension to the original castle that houses the museum.   It is working out to be a great venue.

I am planning to return to working on this quilt today - a black and gold (mostly) version of Japanese Circles and Squares.  I made the blocks this time last year but didn't get them put together, then managed to mix them up.  Luckily I took this reference photo.  The gold 'wedge' print on the left will make an interesting sashing and narrow border.

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